Severe IBS on Whole30


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Hello!

 

This is my first time doing a whole30, I'm on day 6, and it has not been going to plan. My last meal before beginning the program didn't start me off on the right track and now I can't seem to recover. It started as diarrhea. About ten minutes after I'd eat something, I'd have severe intestinal cramps and then I had to go to the bathroom. It happened multiple times a day for about three days. The fourth day was better, only happened once or twice so I thought I was finally in the clear. But yesterday it came back with a vengeance. I don't have the diarrhea but I have the same cramping that sends me to the bathroom but nothing comes out. This is very uncommon for and I don't know what to do. It's so frequent and intense I'm considering stopping the program because I can't go be running in and out of class every 20 minutes.

 

Regarding meals, I alternate eating a vegetable frittata  (eggs, spinach, tomatoes, broccoli), a beef "stew" (tomato sauce, beef broth, and spices), scotch egg (self-spiced ground pork around a hard boiled egg), and a chicken soup (chicken, celery, onions, carrots, spices). I'll have the occasional strip of bacon with breakfast, hard boiled egg for a snack, or add avocado to the stew.. I've had a few bites of roasted cauliflower and Brussel sprouts once this week but that's it. Regarding nuts, I haven't been eating them. Oh and I basically drink La Croix exclusively. Love the carbonation. So I have about three or four of those a day I'd say.

 

Please help. I have no idea what is causing this problem but it can't keep happening. Thank you so much.

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First, if you have medicine that helps with the diarrhea or cramping, it's okay to take it.  

Is it possible you have either a virus or some food poisoning that you're recovering from? 

Is there anything you're eating now that is new to you, or that you're eating in much larger quantities than you have previously? It might be that you're sensitive to that, if there is, so if something stands out to you, you might try leaving that out.

La Croix shouldn't be causing diarrhea, but the carbonation can cause bloating for sure, and is probably not helping the cramping -- focus on drinking plain water, not carbonated, and aim for 1/2 ounce per pound of body weight, so a 120-lb person needs at least 60 oz.

For now, I'd focus on fairly bland, easy to digest foods and see if you don't start feeling better. Things like grilled chicken, scrambled eggs, baked potatoes or sweet potatoes with salt and ghee or olive oil. Soups -- your chicken soup there sounds good, or try some butternut squash soup if you want something different. Keep the spices not too spicy for a while. If you continue to feel bad, you might talk to a doctor, just to rule out any underlying issues that aren't going to be fixed by food alone.

If you want to continue Whole30 or come back to it later, you might look into FODMAPS or nightshades and see if the foods listed in either of those categories seem like things that might be causing problems for you. If you're really not sure what particular foods are causing issues, you might want to consider keeping a food diary. Don't focus on calories or macros, but list the foods you eat each meal and how you're feeling, and see if over time you can see a pattern to when you have issues.

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I also have IBS and have found that I need to avoid onions and garlic entirely as they are really hard on my gut. Have you looked up FODMAP foods? There are a bunch of stuff high on the list that it looks like you might still be eating. I have found that on this Whole30 (its my second), cutting back on most nuts and garlic and onions have really helped with my intestinal distress. I also second taking an anti-diarrheal medicine. I had diarrhea for 10 days after I gave birth to my son and my husband finally made me take some and it helped immediately (I hate taking any medicine). 

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Try to remove or decrease the eggs.  I started the Whole30 because of IBS issues which got worst because I was eating mainly eggs.  I minimized my egg intake to 3 eggs at max for each meal and feel so much better.   Saturated fats might be an issue but based on your meals, it sounds like it could be eggs.

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This happened to me in my first Whole 30 and made it way harder than it had to be.  Turned out I had to cut out sweet potato (which I had never had a problem with before, but which I had eaten every day for a week) and coconut (again, no problem in the past, but I'd never eaten it in the quantity I was during that first week--coconut milk/oil as a frequent substitute).  I've avoided both this second time around and it's been easier, although my stomach is still super gassy and unregulated the first week.  Once I started taking probiotics, it got better as well.  Hang in there!  Some course correction should get you on a good road.

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